Hyundai Motors announces plans for the United States as President-elect Donald Trump prepares to take office.
First Hyundai filled up the assembly plant in Montgomery. Then they started parking cars in a nearby field by the hundreds.
The plant is dealing with a double whammy of transportation issues and slowing sedan sales, but the bottom line is that the Korean automaker’s largest North American plant has too many cars.
Still, faced with alternatives like eliminating shifts or laying off employees, the plant decided instead to slow down the production line and maintain round-the-clock, five-day work weeks. The plant employs more than 3,000 people. Those workers are making about 200 fewer vehicles a day since the slowdown started two weeks ago, Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama spokesman Robert Burns said.
At the same time, the company said the plant has had trouble with rail service. About 65 percent of its cars go out by train.
The plant is serviced by CSX railroad, which has experienced slowdowns across the nation this summer as it implemented a new operating plan. CSX eliminated 3,700 jobs this year as part of the changes.
CSX said in a statement that it’s new operating model is designed to improve service to customers like Hyundai.
“CSX has acknowledged that recent operational adjustments have created some challenges, and we have been actively engaged in discussions with Hyundai representatives to address the issues that have impacted their service,” CSX spokesman Rob Doolittle said….
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